CHOOSE A radiant city of conferences and congresses OULU

Your next conference in Oulu?

The most successful and memorable conferences with an Arctic twist are organised in Oulu! Oulu is the hub of science, business and culture in northern Finland. Oulu is also the fastest growing urban region in Arctic Europe, and on the edge in many senses. When you look at the world map, Oulu is close to the northernmost edge. Oulu is also on the cutting edge when it comes to expertise, innovations and research – driven by the world’s top specialists. Every day, approximately 2.6 billion people around the world use mobile technologies developed in Oulu.

Set up a quality conference in Oulu

Experts in Oulu have solid experience in arranging international conferences as well as major national events. Oulu has pleasant and functionable conference venues for all kinds of needs – even sizable events. A compact city centre, short distances, fluid traffic and first-class accommodation options guarantee the comfort of your conference guests. Oulu provides a unique setting for a conference, as the beat of the city, the closeness of nature and the northern hospitality all go hand in hand. In Oulu, your guests will enjoy a pleasant package of big city services and small-town warmth.

A conference in Oulu is so much more besides work: it is an exotic experience. In the wintertime, your international guests can wonder at the frozen sea available for walks right next to the city centre, and in the summer the midnight sun shines all through the night. Oulu is famous for its extensive and well-maintained network of bicycle routes as well as the resilience of local winter bikers. Oulu is also a contender for European Capital of Culture in 2026, and it is no wonder with events oozing northern craziness: just look at the Air Guitar World Championships, or Polar Bear Pitching, where startups must impress potential investors by standing waist-deep in a hole drilled in the sea ice. Bring your conference guests to Oulu and let them experience truly original moments in a city surrounded by extraordinary Arctic nature!

Oulu is making a bid to become the European Capital of Culture in 2026. There are events and happenings for all tastes in the city, practically every night. Oulu is famous for the Air Guitar and the local expertise in the art of dance, but here you can also enjoy high-quality theatre, circus, visual arts, and sports. A wide range of music events takes place throughout the year in big venues and intimate club settings alike.

Oulu is accessible

  • BY TRAIN

    20 Oulu–Helsinki trains per day,
    140 trains a week

  • BY PLANE

    96 Oulu–Helsinki flights per week.

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Our services

Oulu Convention Bureau provides gratuitous assistance in bringing events to Oulu – particularly in early stage planning such as searching for venues and accommodation, as well as utilising local networks. Every event is unique, and we have versatile expertise to benefit all kinds of customers.
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Oulu Convention Bureau

Oulu Convention Bureau

The event organiser is responsible for actual arrangements, but Oulu Convention Bureau provides assistance with the organising.
We offer objective expert assistance for the planning and application phase of your conference, free of charge:

  • pre-planning the event together with the applicant
  • preliminary budgeting
  • preliminary booking of conference spaces and lodging
  • planning the additional programme and preliminary bookings
  • assistance in selecting suitable partners and service providers
  • planning and preparation of bid documents and materials (Oulu photos and videos)
    See OCB application model Hakemusmalli (bid book)
  • organising a familiarisation visit for decision-makers of international organisations
  • advance marketing of conference through the City of Oulu communication channels

Oulu Convention Bureau also offers a covering information package of Oulu as a city for meetings, conferences and events. In addition, we help you create collaboration networks with the city organisation and service providers. You can benefit from our extensive local expertise and partnership networks along with impartial information of various operators.

  1. Make use of free assistance offered by your region, municipality or city, such as the Oulu Convention Bureau in Oulu.
  2. Find out about the invitation procedure and pick a date. Remember to pay attention to possible traditional meeting times, other events in the same field, and holidays.
  3. Put effort into presenting the invitation. So be prepared to promote Finland.
  4. Confirm and book the venues, facilities, services and transport well in advance.
  5. Consider a familiarisation visit. You can invite decision-makers to get acquainted with FInland before the congress country is selected.
  6. Plan the finances for you conference and keep them updated. Plan your budget and funding well in advance and keep it in check with regular monitoring.
  7. Find out about possible sources for funding. Remember that you will have expenses long before the event itself.
  8. Prepare the programme with care and effort. High-quality substance is at the core of meetings and congresses, but plan the more casual content carefully, too. Memorable networking events attract participants.
  9. Distribute tasks and responsibilities clearly. Your organising committee should not become too big or inflexible.
  10. Remember marketing! Efficient marketing will increase the number of your convention participants.

Guides to organising conferences

Memberships

We are members of the following domestic and international networks.

Please contact us

Riina Aikio, Events and Conventions Manager
+358 (0) 40 419 6605
riina.aikio@businessoulu.com

Helena Pikkarainen, Senior Advisor, Meetings and Conferences
+358 (0) 44 703 1323
helena.pikkarainen@businessoulu.com

Service providers

Memorable framework programme in Oulu

A high-quality supplementary programme is an important part of a conference visit. Your guests can experience conference city Oulu either independently or through activities tailored for groups. Nature is close by – just a stone’s throw from the city centre. True wilderness can be found only a couple of hours’ drove away. The maritime city of Oulu is unofficially known as a northern capital for biking. During their free time, a conference visitor may grab a pink city bike and take a ride through picturesque Pikisaari Island to the beautiful Nallikari Beach, or roll inland along the banks of Oulu River, marvelling at the beautiful scenery there. Along the riverbanks, there are also wonderful sauna rafts for enjoying the mellow heat of a sauna, along with a refreshing dip in the river. Other methods of relaxation on the waters include SUP boarding or canoeing, for example.

Nature around the corner

In the winter, you can go for a fatbike trip on the ice of the frozen sea, or in the woods. A bicycle safari is a wonderful way of getting to know the nature around Oulu in a group. Several specialised companies offer memorable, recreational activities for guests. If there is enough spare time, your conference guests can also escape the bustle of Oulu and enjoy the quiet of Syöte National Park or the natural wonders of Rokua Geopark. While there, it is possible to take in the scenery on snowshoes, skis, or a bike, for example. Even Santa Claus lives practically next door – the drive to the Arctic Circle takes only a few hours.

Tourist Information

Oulu Tourist Information Office can give practical advice and useful tips to tourists and locals alike. Have a look at our travel tips!
Tourist Information home page

As a conference organiser, you can let professionals take care of practical matters concerning the arrangements. If you wish to vacate some time for planning the content of your conference, contact a conference service agency.

An interesting supplementary programme is an inseparable part of a successful conference. Oulu and its surroundings offer versatile possibilities for arranging various activities and evening happenings.

Well organised catering is an integral part of a conference. People must eat to keep up, and a good host will take care of fluent dining. There are many catering companies in the Oulu region, some of which are listed below.

The versatile selection of transport companies in Oulu will move both large and small groups around with ease.

Conference venues

All the venues are quick and easy to reach, for the majority of them are located in the city centre. Venues farther away are located by convenient connections. As a lively city of enterprise and universities, Oulu has a comprehensive selection of various party venues and sauna premises along with restaurants that operate on a charter basis.

Event venue
Auditorium
Cocktail
Seated dinner
Spaces in total
Contact
De Gamlas Hem 100 3 degamlashotel.fi
Maikkula Mansion 90 400 200 10 www.maikkulankartano.fi
Oulun Kiipeilykeskus 40 60 24 4 www.oulunkiipeilykeskus.com
Oulu Museum of Art 40 120 3 www.ouka.fi/taidemuseo
Tuba – Food & Lounge 90 90 70 1 www.tuba.fi
Vanha Paloasema 96 96 80 2 www.raflaamo.fi/fi/oulu/vanha-paloasema-oulu
Event venue
Auditorium Cocktail Seated dinner Spaces in total
Contact
Alppimaja 200 250 200 3 www.alppimaja.fi
Break Sokos Hotelli Eden 200 450 250 13 www.sokoshotels.fi
Kasarmi 168 luovi.fi/kasarmi/juhlatilaisuudet/
Cultural Centre Valve 150 300 80 9 www.kulttuurivalve.fi
Lapland Hotels Oulu 180 600 350 12 www.laplandhotels.fi
Pohto 300 300 300 11 www.pohto.fi
Original Sokos Hotel Arina 250 450 120 6 www.sokoshotels.fi
Oulu Lines 140 125 www.oululines.fi
Oulu Main Library 190 190 3 www.ouka.fi/oulu/kirjasto/tilat-laitteet-ja-valineet
Radisson Blu Hotel Oulu tarkentuu myöhemmin tarkentuu myöhemmin tarkentuu myöhemmin tarkentuu myöhemmin www.radissonhotels.com/fi-fi/hotellit/radisson-blu-oulu
Restaurant Nallikari 200 2000 300 5 www.ravintolanallikari.fi
Restaurant Hilikku 250 250 225 2 www.hilkku.fi
Restaurant Rauhala 100 180 150 6 www.ravintolarauhala.fi
Scandic Oulu City 160 150 150 10 www.scandichotels.fi
Scandic Oulu Station 180 www.scandichotels.fi
Teatteri Rio 250 1 www.teatteririo.fi
Technopolis 200 1200 600 59 www.technopolis.fi/kokoustilat/
Science Centre Tietomaa 210 200 96 5 www.oulunluuppi.fi
Event venue
Auditorium Cocktail Seated dinner
Spaces in total
Contact
Pohjankartano 470 250 2 www.ouka.fi/oulu/oulu-opisto/vuokrattavia-tiloja
Hotelli Lasaretti 350 350 250 10 www.lasaretti.com
Event venue
Auditorium Cocktail Seated dinner Spaces in total
Contact
Club Teatria 250 www.teatria.com
Ouluhalli Arena 7000 4500 www.ouka.fi/oulu/liikunta-ja-ulkoilu/ouluhalli
Oulu Hockey Arena 6641 www.ouka.fi/oulu/liikunta-ja-ulkoilu/oulun-jaahalli
Oulu Music Centre 816 1200 460 www.oulunmusiikkikeskus.fi
Oulu Theatre 900 900 550 4 www.teatteri.ouka.fi
SuperPark 1200 1400 700 12 www.superpark.fi/oulu
Tullisali Arena www.tullisali.fi
  • You can find a list of the conference venues in the region at Visitoulu.fi.
  • In the Saunatilat.fi portal, you can find more than 100 different options for venues: saunatilat.fi/oulu

Accommodation

The best-known hotels are located in the heart of Oulu. In Nallikari, you can find lodging in Nallikari Holiday VIllage, in a beautiful camping site next to the sea. Oulu has enough hotels to lodge thousands of conference guests, if necessary.

OTHER LODGING:

Conference calendar

Thank you for letting us know about your conference!

OCB keeps statistics and maintains communication on international meetings and conferences taking place in Oulu. If an event meets the criteria of an international conference, we will communicate them further to FCB for statistics. If you wish, you may register your conference with us just for statistical purposes.

Conferences from the previous year must be reported to us by 31 January in order to be considered in the annual conference statistics. The annual statistics are published every year in March or April. The conference statistics yield useful information to us for developing Oulu as a conference city. Please report your event to us by e-mail to conventionoulu@oulu.com

The criteria for an international conference

  • A minimum of ten participants
  • Participants from at least three countries
  • A minimum of 20% of participants from abroad
  • Duration of at least one day (minimum 4 hours)
  • Conference must have a designated website
Time
Name of event
Venue and number of participants
18.-21.5.2021 Taitaja – ammattitaidon SM-kilpailu Ouluhalli Arena, Oulu Hockey Arena and OSAO Haukipudas Unit
21.-23.5.2021 Kirkkopäivät ja Lähetysjuhlat
?.6.2021 Conference on Epidemiological Birth Cohort and Longitudinal Studies – 4th Paula Rantakallio symposium University of Oulu
11.-12.6.2021 2nd CFP: Transcultural Encounters 3: Debate! Language, Culture and Information in Interaction University of Oulu
12.-15.8.2021 Valtakunnalliset kotiseutupäivät
23. – 27.8.2021 ICESS (International Electronic Spectroscopy and Structure) University of Oulu
The calendar shows all publishable and significant national and international conferences known to us. For information on international conferences organised in Finland, please see also the Finland Convention Bureau conference calendar.
Aika
Tapahtuman nimi
Paikka ja osallistujamäärä
8.-10.1.2020 ICFUTURE2020 Hotelli Lasaretti
29.-30.1.2020 PRINSE’20 University of Oulu
5.-6.2.2020 Northern Lights Education Conference Oulu
12.2.2020 Wind Finland goes production 2020 BusinessOulu
18.-20.2.2020 Arctic Education Forum 2020
11.-15.5.2020 Midnight Summer School Oulu
14.-15.5.2020 Oulu Conference on DIVERSITY AND DIALOGUE – Migration and participation University of Oulu
26.-28.8.2020 The 6th International Conference on Design Creativity (ICDC 2020) University of Oulu
2.9.2020 PropTech 2020 Oulu
4.-6.9.2020 Keskustan sääntömääräinen puoluekokous Ouluhalli
11.-13.9.2020 The Rotary Institute Finland 2020 Radisson Blu Oulu / 350
6.-7.10.2020 Jätehuoltopäivät verkkotapahtuma
22.-24.10.2020 12th Annual Symposium of Architectural Research 2020 (Atut2020) University of Oulu
Kalenterissa ovat kaikki tiedossamme olevat julkaisuluvalliset, merkittävät valtakunnalliset ja kansainväliset kongressit. Suomessa järjestettävistä kansainvälisistä kongresseista löydät tietoja myös Finland Convention Bureaun kongressikalenterista.
Time
Name of event
Venue and number of participants
16.-17.1.2019 Northern Lights Education Conference Oulu Teacher Training School / 20-30
5.-6.2.2019 Oikos Finland conference for ecologists and evolutionary biologists Hotelli Lasaretti / 200
7.-9.2.2019 One Arctic – One Health Original Sokos Hotel Arina
12.-13.3.2019 Polar Bear Pitching
12.-14.3.2019 Can ECoC save the world? Hotelli Lasaretti
20.3.2019 FiDiPro Biocomposites and Biomaterials -seminar Hotelli Lasaretti
1.-5.4.2019 International Teacher and Staff Exchange Week OAMK
2.4.2019 PropTech Oulu Radisson Blu Oulu
9.4.2019 Biocenter Oulu Day 2019: Nature Meets Technology – The many faces of modern medicine University of Oulu
24.-26.4.2019 COACT Conference 2019 University of Oulu
9.-10.5.2019 Nordic Interprofessional Network NIPNET Conference 2019 OAMK / 100
13.-17.5.2019 Midnight Sun Summer School Oulu Teacher Training School / 50-70
14.-15.5.2019 Industry Summit 2019 Oulu Theatre
23.-24.5.2019 TERVE-SOS 2019 Oulun Theatre
27.-29.5.2019 10th MC meeting and 10th technical meeting University of Oulu
28.-29.5.2019 FabLearn Europe University of Oulu / 100
5.-6.6.2019 IMSE™ Solution Day 2.0
6.6.2019 GenZ Talks seminar University of Oulu
6.-7.6.2019 PrintoCent InnoFest Restaurant Nallikari / 120
9.-10.6.2019 Oulu HIMSS & Health 2.0 Side event Maikkula Mansion, Oulu University Hospital, OYS TestLab
10.-15.6.2019 UBISS 2019 University of Oulu
17.-19.6.2019 ISCORD 2019 Hotelli Lasaretti / 200-300
8.-9.8.2019 IAIC 2019 – The 4th International Agriculture Innovation Conference IAAS, University of Oulu
12.-17.8.2019 International Incoherent Scatter Radar School Pikku-Syöte
14.–16.8.2019 RDHum 2019 University of Oulu
19.-23.8.2019 19th International EISCAT Symposium 2019 and 46th Annual European Meeting on Atmospheric Studies by Optical Methods University of Oulu
24.-25.8.2019 Kristillisdemokraattien 33. puoluekokous Pohjankartano School
27.-30.8.2019 ISWCS 2019
29.-30.8.2019 Finland – MAX IV Symposium University of Oulu
9.-11.9.2019 Oulu Mining Summit University of Oulu
12.9.2019 Energy solutions for the block level – Opportunities in Smart City business environment Ympäristötalo
24.-26.9.2019 Colours and Shadows – Deep Glance in Modern Pedagogy Oulu Teacher Training School / 20-30
24.-25.10.2019 32nd Nordic Seminar on Computational Mechanics University of Oulu / 50-100
24.-26.10.2019 Historiantutkimuksen päivät 2019
30.10.-1.11.2019 CriM 2019 Cyber Security Seminar and Workshops University of Oulu
10.-11.12.2019 Upscaling Digital Solutions in Cities Oulu, Finland
The calendar shows all publishable and significant national and international conferences known to us. For information on international conferences organised in Finland, please see also the Finland Convention Bureaun conference calendar.

Please contact us

Oulu Convention Bureau is the official meeting and conference agency of the City of Oulu. We provide unbiased expert services free of charge to help you organise a successful event in Oulu.





Oulu Convention Bureau

Postal address: PL 22, 90015 Oulun kaupunki
Street address: Hallituskatu 36 B, 90100 Oulu

""

Riina Aikio

Events and Conventions Manager

+358 (0)40 419 6605
riina.aikio@businessoulu.com
""

Helena Pikkarainen

Senior Advisor, Meetings and Conferences

+358 (0)44 703 1323
helena.pikkarainen@businessoulu.com

In collaboration